LA County Museum of Art (LACMA)
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art, or LACMA as it is commonly known, is among the world’s largest art collections in North America, and to be specific enough the most prevalent artwork in the western United States (Compton 165). This massive art museum has a collection of over 100,000 artworks, which extends from the ancient times to present days (Gilbert and Mills 174). These collections, which are mainly from Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin-America and America itself, are grouped into several departments within the museums buildings, depending on the region, culture, media, and time period. This paper analyzes the different genres of art and explains the main features that make the Islamic artworks distinguish themselves as historic masterpieces, by using stylistic and interpretive analysis methods.
History and Origin of LACMA Artworks
The museums Asian art collection, preferably from China and Korea, are exhibited in the Pavilion for Japanese Art (Basch and Poole 541), whereas the Latin American art collection: comprising pre-Columbian magnum opuses to works by Diego Rivera, Clemento Orozco, Frida Kahlo, and such like, are exhibited in the Latin American Art galleries (Compton 165). In addition to its American, Latin American and Asian artworks, the museum has also some of the renowned Islamic and African art collections. The Latin American collection harbors pre-Columbian and Spanish art galleries and other recent and contemporary works of art. But despite its predominance in the LACMA museum, these pieces of art may not rival the Arabian or Islamic art in beauty and magnificence.
Benedetti claims LACMA harbors over 1,700 different Islamic artworks (4). Most of them are collected from the region between Southern Spain extending to Central Asia, including Greece, the Roman Empire and ancient Egypt (Doak 136). These pieces of work include carved wood and stone, manuscripts on stone tablets and reeds, illumination, calligraphy, enameled glass, inlaid metal work and glazed ceramics, preferably from the Turkish and Iranian regions. A common characteristic among Islamic artworks is their brilliant use of colors and the perfect balance between the design and form that they portray. These unique features make these pieces of art create an immediate visual impact to the observers.
The Types of Artworks
A common Islamic art masterpiece is the use of tiles, more so the Iranian Star-shaped tile (Necipoglu 174). This is a 15th century artwork, probably made during the time when the Timurids ruled over Iran (Doak 136). This star-like tile; as illustrated in Figure I below, has a decoration of geometric shapes leaves and flowers on it, with a major flower being positioned right at the center of the tile. These tiles were made to cover outer walls of buildings, with designs and colorful patterns, to make such structures more beautiful. The tiles were fitted together using mortar on the walls of structures to create a...